Stella Awards 2022: Best Sustainability Initiative

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Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino

With more than 3,200 guest rooms and the fifth largest convention center in the U.S., everything about the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino is outsize — including its conservation efforts. To begin with, the center is home to a 26-acre solar rooftop able to generate more than 20 percent of the power for the entire property. The facility also recycles more than 82 percent of all meeting materials and fully half of all generated waste, including over 750 tons of glass, nearly 2 million pounds of plastic and more than 1.5 million pounds of paper annually.
In addition, through its Feeding Forward program, the property takes unserved food from events and safely donates it to causes serving the needy. For all these efforts, and by rigorously training its employees in eco-friendly practices, the resort has been awarded the prestigious 5 Keys rating by the Green Key Eco-Rating Program, which evaluates locations based on their green operations.

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Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

In Galena, Ill., the Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa has reduced its carbon footprint via extensive recycling efforts, an ever-bourgeoning array of solar panels and measures such as offering electric-car charging stations, converting the entire resort from propane to natural gas, and even reducing its nighttime “light pollution” to garner a citation by the International Dark Sky Association for helping to keep the surrounding area one of the top stargazing locations in the U.S. The resort has 80 guest rooms and more than 15,000 square feet of meeting space.

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Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa

The first and, still, only LEED Silver-certified resort in the Cayman Islands, the 264-room Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa likes to refer to itself as Stewards of the Environment, then backs it up by using solar energy; recycling glass, plastic and even rain water (to keep the groups lush); using energy-efficient LED lighting, and more. The resort also has partnered with a local dive company to help replenish the coral in Caribbean waters via the Seafire Guardians program. For on-site meetings, there are 20,000 square feet of eco-conscious space.

Finalist: Seaport Hotel

Overlooking historic Boston Harbor, the 428-room Seaport Hotel likes to recycle by donating — as in some 5,000 pairs of new socks, formerly an amenity for guests, and hundreds of unused tables and chairs, all to worthy causes. The property also is justly proud of its diversion rate of waste matter — a measure of the effectiveness of reuse, recycling and organic-composting measures — which in the fourth quarter of 2021 was an impressive 48 percent. Event space at the hotel totals 27,000 square feet.